The Mid Session Wrap is a report on the biggest movers in the FTSE 100 and macroeconomic news that impacts movements in share prices. The report also previews macroeconomic data that is due to be released over the course of the session.


FTSE 100 continues to advance with Admiral top of the pile

January 21 2013, 1:09pm
FTSE 100 continues to advance with Admiral top of the pile

Britain may be slowed by snow but that didn't stop the FTSE 100 surging forward this Monday.

As at 11.58am, the index was up over 16 points to 0.26%, to stand at 6,170 with financial stocks doing well.

Insurer Admiral (LON:ADM) was the biggest gainer, up more than 5.2% - to stand at 1,214 pence after it was boosted by positive thoughts on the shares from City heavyweight Goldman Sachs.

The US bank added the shares to its “conviction buy” list moving the stock up from a “neutral” rating.

Conversely, Pearson (LON:PSON) shares were falling - 3.47% - to trade down to 1,195 pence each.

It said it would report flat profits this year after tough trading in the final quarter, which it cautioned is set to continue into 2013.

The firm was mostly friendless afterwards but Goldman Sachs stayed loyal.

It repeated its ‘buy’ recommendation on the shares and urged its clients to ignore short-term headwinds and focus on the long-term attractions.

Away from the big caps, the smaller firms were not faring so well. The FTSE AIM 100 was down 9.15 points to 3291,91, while the FTSE AIM All-Share was down 0.70 to stand at 737.40.

On FTSE AIM 100, Circle Oil (LON:COP) fell 1.5% while Fyffes (LON:FFY was down 2.3%.

Among the risers was Atlantic Coal (LON:ATC), up 3.57% to 0.29p, which said it had exercised its lease option over the Pott & Bannon coal mine in Pennsylvania.

The company believes the addition of the property, which is just 25 miles from the firm’s Stockton colliery, could treble the company’s existing reserves.

The 410-acre site is estimated to contain up to 13.6mln tonnes of coal, equating to around 4.1mln tonnes of washed, saleable anthracite.

Iron ore firm Afferro (LON:AFF) was also up 1.37% as one of its non-exec directors Ousmane Kane resigned to concentrate on his other role as vice chairman of African Iron Ore.

Afferro is currently in a possible takeover situation having announced last month that a number of suitors had approached the Cameroon-focused iron ore explorer.

News of the completed water delivery system at Paragon Diamonds' (LON:PRG) Lemphane bulk sampling plant in Lesotho sent its shares northwards today - rising 2.53% to stand at 20.25 pence each.

Other notable gainers were Alecto Minerals (LON:ALO), which gained 4.76% to stand at 1.10 pence each and Orogen Gold (LON:ORE) which was lifted 4.08% to stand at 0.51 pence.

Blur Group (LON:BLUR) shares went up 12.08% to stand at 148.50 pence, while Chaarat Gold (LON:CGH) went up 9.95% to stand at 29 pence each.

Last week Chaarat announced that tax changes in the Kyrgyz Republic, where it operates, have ‘simplified and clarified’ the operational environment for mining in the country.

Gold recovery specialist Goldplat (LON:GDP) was also up today, rising 3.09%.

US markets are closed today for Martin Luther King day.

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